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Past Crimes: A Van Shaw Novel (Van Shaw Novels #1) (Hardcover)

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Staff Reviews


The story opens with Army Ranger Van Shaw arriving at his grandfather’s home in Seattle, a home he left ten years ago and not on the best of terms. It’s not exactly a welcoming homecoming either as Van stumbles upon his grandfather lying on the floor, left for dead. This is all in the first chapter and the action doesn’t let up from there. Van is Seattle PD’s number one suspect, of course, and it’s up to Van to track down the killer. The only way to do that is to go back into the criminal underworld his grandfather inhabited, a world Van swore off forever. The deeper he digs, the more shocking secrets he uncovers about his grandfather; not to mention his own demons he’d rather leave buried. I wanted to tear through the book to find out what happens next, but the rich atmospheric details had me savoring it instead.

— Sarah


The Anthony, Macavity, and Strand Critics award-winning debut from Glen Erik Hamilton

When his estranged grandfather is shot and left for dead, an Army Ranger must plunge into the criminal underworld of his youth to find a murderer and uncover a shocking family secret in this atmospheric and evocative debut thriller.

Van Shaw was raised to be a thief, but at eighteen he suddenly broke all ties to that life and joined the military—abandoning his illicit past and the career-criminal grandfather who taught him the trade. Now, after ten years of silence, his grandfather has asked him to come home to Seattle. But when Van arrives, he discovers his grandfather bleeding out on the floor from a gunshot to the head. With a lifetime of tough history between him and the old man, Van knows he’s sure to be the main suspect.

The only way he can clear his name is to go back to the world he’d sworn to leave behind. Tapping into his criminal skills, he begins to hunt the shooter and uncover what drove his grandfather to reach out after so long. But in a violent, high-stakes world where right and wrong aren’t defined by the law, Van finds that the past is all too present . . . and that the secrets held by those closest to him are the deadliest of all.

Edgy and suspenseful, rich with emotional resonance, gritty action, and a deep-rooted sense of place, Past Crimes trumpets the arrival of a powerful talent in the mold of Dennis Lehane, Robert B. Parker, and John D. MacDonald.

About the Author

A native of Seattle, Glen Erik Hamilton grew up aboard a sailboat, and spent his youth finding trouble around the marinas and commercial docks and islands of the Pacific Northwest. He now lives in Burbank, California, with his family, punctuated by frequent visits to his hometown to soak up the rain.

Praise For…

“A debut novel from a gifted writer with a sure hand. As much fun to read as Lee Child’s Jack Reacher.”
— J.A. Jance on PAST CRIMES

“PAST CRIMES is a zipline ride of a thriller, plummeting through the back alleys of Seattle where murder and intrigue reign supreme and the undead past lurks around the next wrong turn. Buckle in and hang on!”
— Gregg Hurwitz, New York Times bestselling author, on PAST CRIMES

“A home run off the first pitch - this guy has got what it takes.”
New York Times bestselling author Lee Child on PAST CRIMES

“…an exciting heir to the classic detective novel. A well-written modern rendition of the old-fashioned gritty noir.”
— Kirkus on PAST CRIMES

“If he stays true to his talent, Hamilton is an author to watch.”
— Booklist on PAST CRIMES

“Readers will be eager to see more of this tough, clever hero.”
— Publishers Weekly (starred review) on PAST CRIMES

“Edgy and suspenseful.”
— Crimespree Magazine on PAST CRIMES

“Fans of action-filled mysteries should get to know Van Shaw right now and plan to be following his exploits for quite some time.”
— The Cedar Rapids Gazette on PAST CRIMES

“Glen Erik Hamilton’s impressive debut novel fuses procedural plotting, vigilantism and noir. The seedy setting and one man’s hunt for justice create an emotionally stirring and morally ambiguous read. Past Crimes keeps readers on edge and second-guessing every character.”

“Glen Erik Hamilton is a welcome new entry in the very over-crowded crime-fiction genre.”
— David Rothenberg, WBAI-FM (New York City) on PAST CRIMES

“With ‘Past Crimes,’ debut novelist Glen Eric Hamilton comes out of the chute riding a rocket sled of thrills. This action-laced crime noir reads like a comfortable third entry in an already established franchise.”
— Madison County Herald on PAST CRIMES

“In his outstanding debut, Hamilton has created a tough and intriguing character in Van Shaw, one that will appeal to fans of Lee Child’s Jack Reacher series.”
— Library Journal (starred review) on PAST CRIMES

“With wry humor and plenty of action, Glen Erick Hamilton’s “Past Crimes” is an updated version of the classic hard-boiled detective novel.”
— Iron Mountain Daily News on PAST CRIMES

“Page-turning and poignant, with not a drop of phony sentiment or overwriting. Grade: A”
— Cleveland Plain Dealer on PAST CRIMES

“Hamilton begins lobbing hand grenades into the room about three-quarters of the way through and doesn’t let up until practically the last page, piling surprises and explosions on top of each other.”

“This powerful debut novel introduces a quick-witted and resilient protagonist able to hold his own on both sides of the law.”
— Stop,You're Killing Me! on PAST CRIMES

“Glen Erik writes taut, hard-edged thrillers that I simply can’t put down. Tight prose. Intriguing characters. Here is some fantastic storytelling you don’t want to miss.”
— Steven James, national bestselling author of Checkmate and Every Crooked Path on PAST CRIMES
Product Details
ISBN: 9780062344557
ISBN-10: 0062344552
Publisher: William Morrow
Publication Date: March 3rd, 2015
Pages: 336
Language: English
Series: Van Shaw Novels